Our Obedience Will Save Us

FRIDAY: Twentieth Week in Ordinary Time


Our Obedience Will Save Us

Rules do not restrict our freedom. They enhance the quality of life and protect those who follow them. Ignorant and reckless people despise the law. Their memoirs are tales of tragedy. The history of salvation includes many tragic episodes of the consequences of Israel’s disobedience to the law of God. St. Paul has a graphic explanation for this. "The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life (Ron.6:23)." Even in death, sinners are restless and tormented over their misdeeds (Eze.37:1-14). However, the promise of the resurrection from the dead persists. God will raise both sinners and saints alike when each will receive the reward they deserve (Dan.12:2; Jn.5:29; Matt.5:46).

The Oracle of Ezekiel 37:1-7 points us towards God's love and solidarity with humankind. Despite our fallen nature, God cares for the divine image that we humans share with him. It is of paramount importance to God. Thus, God overlooks our mortality and brevity of life to guarantee even the disobedient a share in his resurrection and the new Israel he has in mind for his creatures (Ps.144:3-4). God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked (Ez.18:23). In other words, God's compassion, love, mercy and forgiveness transcends the grave and gives hope to the people whose God is the Lord (Ps.144:15).

In Christ Jesus, God designated us as his new Israel. He carved his new and everlasting covenant into the fabric of our hearts (Jer.31:31-34). In Christ Jesus, he and gave us two simple but great commandments to help us protect the integrity of this new covenant which reminds us it is impossible to love God without a social and moral conscience (Matt.22:34-40). The hope of our resurrection lies in Christ. He is our eternal covenant. However, unlike Israel of old, we must be faithful to the promise and make the two greatest commandments our moral guide in life since they are indispensable for our salvation (Matt.5:17-19).

O God, plant your word deep in me that I may live and not die.

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